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    All The Dead Are Here - Pete Bevan's zombie tales collection


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    WARNING: Stories on this site may contain mature language and situations, and may be inappropriate for readers under the age of 18.

    THEY’LL EAT IT UP! by James Goad
    January 24, 2008  Short stories   Tags:   

    CHRISTINA

    (horrified)

     

    They’re eating human flesh!

    I watched as the carnage unfolded before me. The cathode ray hurt my eyes, but I couldn’t turn away. I was transfixed to the images.

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

    Why is this happening?

    DR. MOREZ

    We don’t know for sure, but it could be something that was consumed or possibly radioactive contamination.

    FATHER MARCELLO

    (interjecting)

     

    Or a curse, evil manifesting itself in flesh!

    I have my own theory as to why it happened. Man has been sucking the life out the planet since the day Adam came along. Mother Earth just couldn’t take it any longer. She refused to swallow our dead, and puked ’em right back up out of the ground.

    Now we’re feeding on ourselves, like some genocidal… cancer.

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

    Whatever is causing this, we’ve got to stop it. Our families and friends are falling victim, trapped halfway between life and death!


    My name is Matt Waldo. I’m a writer. I came out here to Los Angeles to work in the movies. The promise of more money was enough to draw me from one coast to the other. I’d done a lot of poetry and short stories back in New York, and lived like a pauper all the while.

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    It’s getting pretty bad out there.

     

    DR. MOREZ

     

    It’s going to get a lot worse.

    CHRISTINA

     

    (panicking)

     

    What do you mean worse? What could be worse?

     

    I started writing because I had things I wanted to say.

    Out here, THEY tell you what to say. But, they pay you well for saying it. Money still means something, even in an age where the dead walk the earth.

    DR. MOREZ

     

    We already know that the food poisoning that has affected the passengers occurred when we docked in Haiti, at the ceremonial feast that they were invited to. They thought it was just a show for the tourists.

    Even before it happened, this city was full of zombies. The homeless, and the hopeless, roamed endlessly through the city. And cannibalism was already rampant. The gangs preyed on everyone, including each other. Sure, they weren’t really brain-dead, but that just made it worse. They chose, or in the case of the homeless, were forced, to exist like that. When the real zombies came, things changed. The first to go were the homeless, they were such easy pickings. The gang bangers thought that they were tough, until the people they killed started fighting back.

    DR. MOREZ

     

    I’ve just finished examining the stomach contents of one of the passengers who died in my office less than an hour ago. I found the same thing in him that I have found in several others that have died. Only now I know what it is that the passengers ate.

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    Well, what was it?

     

     

     

    DR. MOREZ

     

    (pauses)

     

    Human flesh.

    I inhale an endless stream of cigarette smoke while I write, and fill my lungs with the city’s smog with each breath. These take their toll on my health but it doesn’t really matter. I lost that battle long ago.

    I had gone to the medicine man. He told me that spirits had invaded my body and were wreaking havoc. He filled my veins with a preservation fluid (he called it “Chemo”), but I continue to decay. It doesn’t always work, he told me.

    FATHER MARCELLO

     

    (reaching towards the heavens)

     

    Out of the depths I cried unto thee, O Lord!

     

    Who would have thought that the dead coming back to life would be my big break?

    Back when the zombies first appeared, a well known B-film producer sent a camera crew into the streets to film the event as it happened. It was a cost effective (read: cheap) way of getting footage that would take millions to stage with actors and special effects. He hired me to write a wrap-around story, telling me that the public (what was left of it) just loved movies based on true stories. “They’ll eat it up!” he beamed.

    DR. MOREZ

     

    So now we know what’s killing them, but what we don’t know is what’s bringing them back to life.

     

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    I think you’ve answered your own question.

     

    DR. MOREZ

     

    What do you mean?

     

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    The ceremony, the feast in Haiti. The same thing that is killing them is bringing them back to life. As zombies.

     

    DR. MOREZ

     

    I’m a man of science; you can’t expect me to believe in superstition!

     

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    What you believe and what you know to be true don’t always have to be the same thing.

     

    Day after day, I sit in this tiny office watching the slow death of planet Earth. It plays over and over on the television. Somehow I must make sense of these sights and weave them into a tale that tells what has happened to us. This is not what THEY told me to write, but, I have something to say.

    Each passing hour I grow weaker. My eyes sink into their sockets, getting ever closer to the brain they serve.
    I sure hope I don’t eat anyone I know.

     

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    Take this pistol. The only way to stop the walking dead is to shoot them in the head. Destroy the brain.

     

    DR. MOREZ

     

    But…

     

    CAPT. DOLENCIA

     

    It’s the only way.

     

    It’s the only way…

    —–

    This story marks the return to the writing world for James Goad. After a lengthy layoff to pursue adventures in the real world he has returned to the land of make believe. His previous writing credit is as one of the writers of the book ‘The Pain Doctors of Suture Self General’ published by Arts Nova Press.

    3 Comments

    1. I’m a screenwriter too and this one was just too far out for me. It didn’t quite hit the nail on the had but I think I see where you were going with it. Keep working on it. There might be something there in terms of a feature that could tell a story form both the perspectives of the living and the dead.

      Comment by Andre on January 11, 2009 @ 1:16 am

    2. I liked it from the standpoint that when you don’t know what the problem is you start grasping at straws. Would like to see this longer though, started developing nicely then kind of leaves you hanging at the end.

      Comment by Terry Schultz on September 1, 2009 @ 6:05 pm

    3. I didn’t like it one bit, I think you can write better than that.

      Comment by mike on October 24, 2009 @ 3:56 pm

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